• Sep 29, 2017

"No. I am not interested. No thanks. Go away. Don’t call back. I don’t know what you’re selling, but I know I don’t want it." The list goes on and on. There are many ways people can tell you no. If you have been in sales for any length of time, then you are fully aware of sales rejection. I have been told no in nice ways and, well, in not-so-nice ways.

In this article, I want to share with you three ways you can overcome sales rejection. Not only will I show you how you overcome sales rejection, I will show you how it can be a great benefit to your future success.

1. Realize you will never run out of prospects.

I was once at a basketball game when one of the audience members was chosen to participate in the 3-point challenge game at halftime. The objection was to score 5 three-pointers in 30 seconds. The contestant missed the first few shots, but kept shooting. At the end of 30 seconds, she had succeeded in making 5 three-point shots. The contestant never worried about how many shots she took or how many baskets she missed because her focus was on making 5 three-pointers.

Unlike this contestant, too many sales people act as if they only have one basketball and one shot. They waste their time mourning rejection and forget they have plenty more “basketballs” just waiting. Rejection cannot hurt when you realize you have plenty of opportunities. Rejection only has a negative impact when your opportunities are limited.

In sales, your opportunities are never limited as long as you have a product or service people use or need. When I began realizing that I had more people in a day that I could call, I understood that I no longer had to fear rejection because I have an unlimited supply of “basketballs” just waiting to be shot.

2. Don’t take things personally.

What is the first thing anyone will teach you in sales? They will teach you to not take things personally. This is much easier said than done. You have to emotionally distance yourself from your product or service realizing that the person is not rejecting you as an individual. There are many reasons people say no to sales people.

They might not need your product or service. They may be so conditioned to rude sales people that they don’t give any salesperson a shot. They might have something else going on in their life that is affecting their mood such as sickness in their family or the death of a loved one.

Either way, if someone is rude to you before they even know you, then how are they going to treat you when they become your customer? Realize they are doing you a favor by showing you they are a bad customer and you really don’t want to do business with them anyway. Count these situations as victories and not as defeats.

3. Have a process and stick to it.

Know your expectation and what it takes to meet it. Once you have established your expectation and calculated what it takes, figure out a systematic process to accomplish it. I am now in a routine of completing certain tasks at fixed times throughout the week. This includes how often I call, how many people I call, how many new contacts I call, how many meetings I will schedule, etc. This helps me stay focused, and I am not driven by the whims of no’s and yes’s.

I know what I am going to be doing every week. Instead of just throwing my hands in the air and starting each week anew, I know exactly what my plan of action is. When you do this, you don’t even think twice about sales rejection because you have a process you’re sticking to and that is where your focus is.

Your business becomes about accomplishing certain tasks and gauging your success upon those accomplishments. You ultimately cannot control how many people reject your product or service, but you can control how you act and react. You can control how many prospects you talk to every day or how many calls you’re making every day.

While there are many other points that could be added to this list, the aforementioned information has helped me in developing thicker skin when being turned down. It has helped me to focus on what I can do instead of mourning what I have no control over. In future articles, I will be developing these concepts even further. 

- Kevin Pendergrass 



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